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Project 180: Why?



Morning, all. Project 180 will officially get underway in less than a week. And while I am excited about this new adventure, I would be less than honest if I didn’t also share that I am scared. And that anxiety makes me live in my head, thinking a lot about the possibilities of success and failure, especially failure. Of late, I have been thinking quite a bit about the number of conversations that I will likely be engaged in as others ask me about what I am doing, and why I am doing it. Here are some of my rehearsed responses as to the why, in no particular order.  Thought I would share.

  • I want to learn.

  • I want to see if kids will learn without traditional grades.

  • I want to see if kids can learn better without traditional grades.

  • I want to challenge conventional thinking.

  • I want to challenge the status quo.

  • I want the focus in my classroom to be learning, not grading.

  • I got tired of playing the grade game.

  • I want to call attention to the absence of any real foundation for traditional grading practices.

  • I want to expose the incredible amount of autonomy that teachers have over their grading practices.

  • Am I not entitled to the same autonomy as every other teacher?

  • I believe education has to change.

  • I believe true motivation is intrinsic.

  • I think learning is a process, a long process in which different learners arrive at different stages at different times, and our traditional practices don’t honor this. In fact, I think our traditional practices unwittingly punish this.

  • I believe students must take ownership of their learning, and I believe this happens through commitment, not compliance.

  • I have to face 20 years of doubt and misgivings about my own grading practices. I can no longer ignore the haunt of those ghosts.

  • I want to grow.

Happy Friday.

superman



One Reply to “Project 180: Why?”

  • I am so excited for your students this year, and their parents and you of course. In reading your message today I think all of your thoughts give a little more insight and only make your reasoning stronger.

    The thought that came over the strongest for me this morning was, that students are all individuals and as individuals they all learn at different stages. I think it is important to recognize this. By recognizing students levels of learning could bring about great changes of how the student feel about learning and give them the confidence they need to keep growing.

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